Just before I packed up and left Vegas, I came across a post from Manolith about "The Top Twelve Hottest Geek Girls." Look I know it’s a bit of fun, but something about it left me a little cold. Do we really need lists like this? With all the talk about getting more women involved in technology across the board, from the speaker list and delegates at tech conferences to the take-up of sciences in schools and universities, is it any wonder that articles like this one are not helping?
And then my opinion swings the other way to point out the underbelly of reality. Given the competitive nature of blogging it’s probably only natural that other factors are going into play. Let’s be honest if you took an empty room and put Robert Scoble at one end and Pete Cashmore at the other there’s going to be a bias towards the Scottish half of the room.
Blogging and online writing is as much a performance art as it is journalism and hard facts. One of the analogies I heard at Blogworld (if it’s yours please let me know) was comparing bloggers to musicians. There are a few Stings and Madonnas out there, who will sit at the top of the tree with a dumper truck of income. But below them there are countless thousands of session musicians who might never get rock star name recognition; but are known in the industry, do solid work, and can make a living from their work. Making the jump from session to star requires a lot of dedication, some luck and using everything at your disposable – even if some of those methods are a touch underhand or not based on your writing.
Online is no different to a newsroom, casting session or politics. Not everyone can make the jump. There’s not enough space in the public conscious or in these eye candy lists. After all, there’s a reason I prefer audio podcasting…
One final thought: I hope that Manolith will put together a "Top Twleve Smokin’ Geek Boys"